May 25, 2011

USOEC Director Steps Down

MARQUETTE– Jeff Kleinschmidt, director of the United States Olympic Education Center, announced today that he will retire after 25 years of service to Northern Michigan University and the Olympic organization, effective June 30.

            “It is with mixed emotions that I have informed NMU President Les Wong of my plan to retire from the USOEC,” said Kleinschmidt. “It has been an honor and a privilege to work with the USOEC administrative and coaching staffs, some of whom are among the most talented, dedicated and hardest-working people in the Olympic movement. I will always cherish the memories of working with the USOEC staff, community volunteers, sponsors, the United States Olympic Committee and the sports governing bodies as we hosted national and international events.”

            Kleinschmidt began working at NMU in 1981 as a student employee at what was then known as the Great Lakes Sports Training Center. In helping NMU in its bid for an Olympic Training Center – which the GLSTC became in 1985 – he researched the required specifications for Olympic center facilities, assisted with visiting Olympic sports visiting campus and wrote some of the bid documents. In 1986, he was hired as the associate director of the Great Lakes State Games, while also serving as the director of the Great Lakes Sports Academy and the Upper Peninsula Summer Sports Festival. Kleinschmidt was named USOEC assistant director in 1989 and then took over as the center’s director in 1991.

            “My service to the USOEC has been both rewarding and challenging. I want to thank my family and friends for tolerating me during some of the more difficult times. I would also like to thank President Wong and Athletic Director Ken Godfrey for their confidence in me over the years. I wish them and the USOEC athletes and staff all the best.”

            According to Wong, an interim director will be named at a later date.

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Prepared By
Claire Kooperman
Media Relations Coordinator
906-227-2854